Business Phone Systems

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diya309 Offline OP
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We're a small business of 4 people with 3 CO lines and are looking for a phone system to handle VM, have direct extensions, and not cause us to miss phone calls.
One local vendor is touting the CTX product, the other ESI-S class. Both are saying we'd be making a mistake by going with the other. We aren't too concerned with every feature available, basic is okay. Which to go with? I am so confused who to believe.

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First of all I would toss them both out. A reputable vendor will tout their products benefits, and their companies service record, not their competitors short comings. People are going to recommend what they are most comfortable with. Truth is most systems now days have pretty much the same basic features you are looking for. Me, I'm a Nortel guy.

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Agree with clanier. Call references and if you can goto customer sites to see. Service in your size range is probably more important than equipment. You aren't asking for much. Good luck...IMHO I don't like vendors that try and "scare" people with crap like that. I like to lead by example and show people what we can do for them. I generally like to demo first on a bid...we are a hard act to follow.

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Yikes! - either one would be fine - have been selling s class systems for 2 years and they are great - toshiba has a good name as well. Call a few local businesses you deal with and ask who they use and if they like them - that will lead you to a good vendor who will sell you what you need - good luck. (if you are by the ocean i will trade you an installation for a tuna fishing trip!)

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I would suggest the Avaya Partner system.
https://www.telbroker.com/phone_system.htm

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| Need a Telephone | Telephone Installers

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Look for reliability (on the internet and here), factor in how much you trust the person selling it,and then factor in the price you want pay. Once you've done that, realize that most phone switches can accomplish all of the same things as far as small PBX systems go, so unless there is a special feature you have to have, I wouldn't base a lot on features. Personally if a customer asks me about another proposed system I am bidding against, I refuse to talk bad about it unless I have direct knowledge and experience using it. i.e. I stopped selling that product because of complaints and issues. Even when that is the case, a good company will mostly refrain from trashing the other system, and instead point out the advantages of theirs and they should be able to send you to a few sites and links on the net with comments about the switch, and refer you to a customer that had the switch to speak with them. On a small system, the rep from the company should be able to answer all of your questions, even technical, with the ability to explain. The best way to tell that the salesperson is trying to make a fast buck is when you ask a few simple questions about the actual operation of the system, and the salesperson defers to a technician. On a system that size a salesperson should have a very good working knowledge of the product. Do your homework! Research the systems as much as you can and pose intelligent questions to the salesperson, if he or she stumbles or give a lot of non-answers they have no idea what they are actually selling you and they have no idea if the product is right for you.

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It's really important that you understand the most important part of your decision...NOT which system is "better", RATHER which Dealer is installing the system and supporting your business.

Ask for references for 3 or 4 of their clients that have had their systems longer than a few months and ask them about how they feel the dealer responds to their support needs.

On a technology note, the main difference I see between the two systems may not apply to you based on your size, but it's a point of mention. The IVX starts at 4x8x2 and grows to 16x32x8. The CTX starts at 3x8x1 and grows to 6x16x2. (Phones lines) x (Digital Extensions) x (Analog Extensions). If you're purchasing a CTX with the base configuration and you want to add an additional phone line in the near future, you may need to add to the system.

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Stephen Joyce, Terminal Solutions, Inc. www.tsinc.com sjoyce@tsinc.com
Business Telephone Systems Sales &a...ntage, Lucent/Avaya, Sprint Protege)[/i]

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diya309 Offline OP
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Thank you very much for all of your comments. They've been very helpful!

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As a Toshiba dealer, I can say that the CTX28 is a good small system, but the voice mail sound quality is lacking. Don't know much about ESI, so I can't comment either way.


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Either way, make sure there are a number of dealers in your area for the system you are looking at. In your size, any system will do more then you will ever need.

Toshiba will probably have more dealers and will be much easier to get parts for 10 years from now.

Junkman, FYI, on the CTX-28, make sure the system is grounded properly to an earth ground or you will get noise on the VM.

Andy
https://www.teleco4.com

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